One of the biggest challenges schools face at the beginning of each school year is tracking down parents and students to collect all of the required health forms and enrollment documents. Families go out of town for the Summer and rarely check their email, and on the off chance that they do open their Inbox - they sometimes skip right over the emails from their student’s school. No one wants to deal with scheduling physicals, filling out medication forms, and figuring out whether or not it’s been 9 or 10 years since their child’s last Tdap vaccination. In June, many schools mail the required health forms to the parents who are then responsible for sending back the completed paperwork in August. So many school packets end up misplaced over the long summer months! This makes complying with state requirements difficult for schools.
But, what does going “Green” have to do with a school’s state compliance rating? More than you think! Picture the hundreds of forms and information packets schools print each year. Now think about each tree that they could save if they converted these forms into digital ones. Let's take student health forms as an example: If a school requires five to seven pages of student health records per student, that's thousands of pages that could be saved by managing those student health records online. What happens if a parent has 3 kids at one school and has to fill out 10 of the five-page required forms per child? It’s easy to see why parents get overwhelmed and how much paper gets wasted each year (in addition to the huge burden to manage these forms by the school staff).
Schools that rely on paper form collection are at a higher risk of low form compliance rates than schools that utilize an electronic Student Health Record (SHR) solution because so many things can go wrong when a paper method is being used. Forms could get lost, parents could forget about them, medication dosages can get mixed up, and physicals could expire without anyone knowing.
With an SHR solution like Magnus Health, these risks are significantly reduced and the compliance rate can increase by about 30% in year 1. Forms are digitally uploaded by parents and students using any ‘smart’ mobile device - it is as simple as snapping a picture of a required form and uploading it into a Magnus account. Gone are the days of nurses hunting down parents over incomplete requirements and missed deadlines!
There are so many more positives about going “Green” by switching from paper form collection to a digital solution! Just take a look at what Magnus set out to accomplish this year. Magnus Health conducts its business with the client, the community, and the environment front of mind, with the goal to have as little negative impact on the environment as possible. As a company, Magnus is now a part of the Green Business Bureau, a national membership organization that uses an online assessment to certify green businesses. What can schools do to be a little more environmentally friendly?
- Make your school forms paperless and track all of them on a digital platform.
- Shred old documents and recycle them, instead of throwing paper in the trash where it will get dumped at the local landfill.
- Ask parents to submit field trip permission slips and emergency contacts online so that teachers and chaperones can easily access them while on a field trip.
It may seem a little overwhelming at first, but the benefits of an increased health form compliance rate and a reduced carbon footprint make the effort well worth it. The best place to start your school’s journey to going green and more compliant is with an electronic Student Health Record system. Learn more about streamlining your student form collection!
For more information regarding the Green practices at Magnus Health, please visit our Green Profile.